How to Export, Back Up, or Restore Contacts on Android

Contacts play a pivotal role in the digital realm of your Android device, holding valuable information that you can’t afford to lose due to unforeseen circumstances like device issues, theft, or accidental deletions. Ensuring the safety and accessibility of your contacts is paramount. In this article, we’ll delve into the techniques of exporting, backing up, and restoring your contacts, utilizing the native capabilities of Android and Google’s Contacts app.

Exporting Contacts

Exporting contacts equates to safeguarding them as a portable file that can be moved to another device or stored securely. The widely accepted format for this process is the VCF (vCard File), a format that is compatible with most email clients and contact apps. Various methods exist to export contacts in Android, dependent on your device model and manufacturer. However, one of the most straightforward and universally accessible methods involves the use of Google’s Contacts app, which can be conveniently downloaded from the Play Store if it’s not already pre-installed on your device.

Here’s how to export contacts using Google’s Contacts app:

  1. Open the Contacts App: Navigate to the Contacts app on your Android device.
  2. Access Export: Locate the “Fix & manage Or Manage Contacts” icon situated at the bottom right corner of the screen.
  3. Choose Export: Tap the “Export to file” option to commence the export process.
  4. Select Destination: Opt for a suitable location to save the exported file. You can choose internal storage, SD card, or cloud services. You also have the option to rename the file before tapping “Save.”

By following these steps, you have successfully exported your contacts as a VCF file, accessible from the chosen location. You can even share this file via email, Bluetooth, or other compatible apps.

Backing Up Contacts

Backing up contacts ensures that they’re securely stored in your Google Account, automatically synchronizing them across your various devices and online services. This approach eliminates concerns about contact loss due to phone theft or replacement. Furthermore, it offers the advantage of accessing your contacts through any web browser by visiting

To back up your contacts in Android, simply follow these steps:

  1. Access Settings: Open your phone’s Settings app and navigate to the “System settings” section.
  2. Initiate Backup: Tap “Backup” and then select “Back up now.”
  3. Enable Contacts Sync: Ensure that the toggle for Contacts is activated. If not, tap it to turn it on, and you may need to tap on the Google Account data option.

By following these steps, your contacts will be backed up to your Google Account, providing a seamless transition between devices and maintaining access from any web browser.

Restoring Contacts

Restoring contacts involves retrieving them from a backup file or account and integrating them back into your phone. This step is especially useful when getting a new phone, resetting your old one, or accidentally deleting specific contacts.

Various methods exist to restore contacts in Android, depending on where you backed them up. If you opted to back them up to your Google Account, the process is straightforward: sign in to the same account on your new or reset phone and wait for the synchronization to finalize. No manual restoration is necessary in this case.

However, if you backed up your contacts as a VCF file, you’ll need to import them using the Contacts app or another application compatible with VCF files. To import contacts from a VCF file using the Contacts app, adhere to these steps:

  1. Open the Contacts App: Access the Contacts app on your Android device.
  2. Navigate to Import: Tap the “Hamburger” menu icon located at the top left corner of the screen.
  3. Select Import File: Choose the appropriate location where you stored the VCF file, be it internal storage, SD card, or cloud service.
  4. Choose Account: Select the desired account to import contacts into. You can also create a new account if necessary.
  5. Import Contacts: After selecting the VCF file, tap “Import” to initiate the import process.

With these steps, you have successfully imported contacts from the VCF file to your phone. Editing and deletion options are also available to meet your specific needs.


Exporting, backing up, and restoring contacts on your Android device is a straightforward process once you become familiar with the techniques. The options provided by Android’s built-in features and Google’s Contacts app allow you to choose the method that best suits your preferences and requirements. By following this guide, you’ll ensure the safety and accessibility of your contacts, providing peace of mind in the ever-evolving world of digital connectivity.

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